Can Marijuana Cure Alzheimer’s Disease? — The Motley Fool

Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by the deposition of Aβ amyloid plaques and twisted tangles of a protein called “tau” in regions of the brain responsible for memory and cognition. Despite our growing understanding of how AD progresses, however, scientists still haven’t pinpointed the exact cause of this disease. 

As a result, AD presently sports one of the worst clinical failure rates for experimental drugs of any major human disease. Punctuating this point, a recent review study revealed that a stunning 99.6% of clinical trials for AD failed to improve patient outcomes over the course of 2002 to 2012.

A human neuron

Image source: Getty Images.

Unfortunately, this negative trend is showing absolutely no signs of reversing course. In 2013, for instance, Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) and Johnson Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) shuttered their anti-amyloid AD research program after the monoclonal antibody, bapineuzumab, flopped

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